XACC: a system-level software infrastructure for heterogeneous Quantum-Classical Computing

XACC is composed of three high-level layers - the front-end, middle-end, and back-end. The over- all workflow starts with quantum kernel programming at the frontend, followed by IR generation and processing, and ends with back-end execution. Each of these layers exposes a variety of critical extension points.

Quantum programming techniques and software have advanced significantly over the past five years, with a majority focusing on high-level language frameworks targeting remote REST library APIs. As quantum computing architectures advance and become more widely available, lower-level, system software infrastructures will be needed to enable tighter, co-processor programming and access models.

Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory present XACC, a system-level software infrastructure for quantum-classical computing that promotes a service-oriented architecture to expose interfaces for core quantum programming, compilation, and execution tasks. The tam details XACC’s interfaces, their interactions, and its implementation as a hardware-agnostic framework for both near-term and future quantum-classical architectures. The paper provides concrete examples demonstrating the utility of this framework with paradigmatic tasks.

Their approach lays the foundation for the development of compilers, associated runtimes, and low-level system tools tightly integrating quantum and classical workflows.

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